Solomon Islanders thinking of applying for a scholarship to study in Australia next year have only until the end of April to lodge their application form.

Australian High Commissioner to Solomon Islands, Matt Anderson is encouraging people to act early to avoid missing the cut off.

Australian Development Scholarships (ADS) and Australian Leaderships Awards (ALA) Scholarships are available for undergraduate and postgraduate studies in Australia, with applications closing on 30 April 2012.

Mr Anderson urged Solomon Islanders to lodge their application forms as soon as possible.

"Please don't leave your application to the last minute as there are a number of mandatory requirements that need to be met and time is running out," he said.

"The scholarships provide a great opportunity for Solomon Islanders to gain essential skills and knowledge so when they return home they are able to drive change and contribute to development in Solomon Islands."
Which, in turn, will help to meet the future training and human resource development needs of the country."

"We expect that Australia will award up to 28 ADS scholarships and up to five ALA scholarships in 2013. This next group of scholars will join around 125 Solomon Islands students who are already studying at Australian or regional universities."
Mr Anderson said the scholarships are an important part of Australia's strong bilateral relationship with Solomon Islands government and people.

"Australia's investment in the scholarship program and education in Solomon Islands plays an important role in making sure Solomon Islands has a highly skilled and trained work force, which in turn will promote development in the country."
The ADS are available for undergraduate and postgraduate study in two categories: open for school leavers, private sector employees and those not in the work force; and public category for public servants.

The ALAs are open to high achievers to undertake postgraduate study. ALA scholars also participate in a unique leadership development program to develop their full leadership potential.

Course of study must relate to Solomon Islands - Australia aid program priority areas of health (not including medicine), education, governance, climate change, economic growth, disability & gender, construction & mining, information technology, community development, legal services, business, accounting and financial management, agricultural sciences and veterinary services.

For more information, contact the AusAID scholarships section at the Australian High Commission on 21561 or email:

Australia also offers Australian Regional Development Scholarships (ARDS) to study at regional institutions. These scholarships will be advertised in May - June 2012.

Source: Press Release, Australian High Commission, Solomon Islands